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Queensland Celebrates 50 Years of Josephite Secondary Education

April 08, 2014

St Joseph's Day was an incredible day of celebration, and It was extra special as close to fifty Sisters of St Joseph shared the morning with Mary MacKillop College.

St Joseph's Day marked a defining moment for the fiftieth celebrations this year. Mary MacKillop College celebrated fifty years of Josephite education in secondary schools in Queensland. So it was a meaningful day for both the sisters and the Mary Mackillop community and very much a marked occasion.

The College began the morning with the mass at the Corpus Christi Church. The Sisters regaled us with their aqua blue scarves and looking at the congregation this beautiful blue blended into the sea of navy of girls uniforms; it was symbolic of the past and present existing together and sharing a common space.

The mass focussed on the qualities of St Joseph, the connection with Mary MacKillop who chose St Joseph to be the patron of her Order and of course the Sisters who have spread the Josephite values and the MacKillop vision.

There was certainly a feeling of genuine respect and understanding present in the Church. This was supported by the various choirs of Vocal Attack; eCCos and 11 & 12 Music Studies students who lead the singing beautifully and the songs certainly had a Josephite flavour. The hymns brought tears to the eyes of the Sisters.

Thank you to Father Bernie Gallagher and Fr John Begg who presided over the Mass with their gentle and welcoming manner. A special thank you must go Carmel and Denise, the Sacristans, who with loving care, adorned the Church with spectacular flowers in special honour of the Sisters.

The Sisters were invited to Morning Tea at the College and the students presented them with a gift of song and dance. The Sisters were able to view the students from above as the students performed "Happy".

Gauging from the smiles on the Sisters faces, it was clear they enjoyed the presentation. This was another moment of a shared sense of community. It was a privilege to observe. At morning tea, the Sisters were able to catch up with staff and some past students whilst being entertained by eCCos.

It was lovely to see Senior students engaged and conversing with the Sisters. It was equally wonderful to observe the Sisters chatting and looking at old photos.

To conclude, I would like to share the words that encapsulate the focus of the day.

The Feast of St Joseph

'It is on the feast day of St Joseph that we remember the qualities of a man who loved unconditionally and understood the meaning of responsibility.
Through the example of St Joseph, may we remember to know what it is to be gentle and just.
May the faith of St Joseph show us that hope finds a way when there is none.
Let us hope that our nation's leaders remember that Joseph and his family lived in land ruled by invaders and had to resort to fleeing to another place to ensure his family's safety.
May their hearts be open to lead and respond with true justice and compassion for those who have to flee to safety to protect their families in our world today.
The vision of Mary MacKillop chose St Joseph to be the patron of her Order, a man who had compassion and knew that was all that was needed.
May the Josephite qualities of love, respect and responsibility remind us to be the best we can be in all our relationships'.

Catherine Rodden
Assistant Principal
Religious Education and Mission

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